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Recommissioning after Coronavirus

Discussion in 'Heritage Railways & Centres in the UK' started by johnofwessex, Mar 24, 2020.

  1. mdewell

    mdewell Member

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    It seems that Didcot is planning to reopen as a static attraction over the summer (no dates as yet), but visitors will get a 'return ticket' to allow a free visit on future steam days. https://didcotrailwaycentre.org.uk/product.php/81/special-return-tickets

    With their site layout this is obviously much easier for them to do than some other railways/sites, but I wonder how many others are thinking along similar lines.
     
  2. Pete Thornhill

    Pete Thornhill Well-Known Member Staff Member Moderator

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    The answer to compartment capacity is to sell on a per compartment basis, yes it pushes the cost up for a single user but it also solves the problem of a space for 6 losing the revenue of the other 5 seats.

    As you say compartment stock isn’t viable for every railway, the GWSR & SVR could pull it off as both have enough to make up a train but the WSR for example, no chance, maybe a Saphos style approach for them? I suppose it’s part of the problem though that there is no single solution for every railway. However for me, I’d prefer compartment stock for my young family as it just feels safer, but I will wait to see the railways come up with before making final decisions.
     
  3. Greenway

    Greenway Part of the furniture

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    As most supermarkets and large retail outlets have sanitary stations in operation, one assumes that heritage lines will need to do the same. Staff and volunteers who normally attend to less essential jobs at stations could likewise be engaged in cleaning carriages at turn around points and toilets. I know these are not the more glamorous, 'poser' type jobs bit if you want your railway operating then these are the things that will be essential to maintain a safe environment for passengers and staff.
     
  4. Greenway

    Greenway Part of the furniture

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    Indeed, Pete, I believe many will prefer to 'dip their big toes in' before committing or setting out for a day on a heritage line.
     
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  5. JBTEvans

    JBTEvans Member

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    The WSR definitely have a BCK, BSK and 2 SKs operating. They have a third SK which I think is awaiting minor repairs and the GWR BCK which isn't far off completion.

    The Hawksworth Saloon could be used for social distancing as well.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2020
  6. garth manor

    garth manor Member

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    Thanks, good news on the Schwarzbach, always a nice side trip from Dresden.
     
  7. misspentyouth62

    misspentyouth62 Member

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    That's great news. My Mother in-Law lives in Didcot and says she is hearing the trains at GWS very recently from her garden - diesel shunter maybe?
     
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  8. toplight

    toplight Member

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    The new issue of Steam railway magazine arrived yesterday and gives various railways around the country that seemed to have decided it is very likely they may not run for the public at all until probably next year. Really depressing, I was hoping to get some steam fixes later in the year but seems many lines will not be running at all. Many seem concerned even if they do run they wont be able to maintain any social distancing and may loose money on each train though not enough passengers anyway.

    I wonder whether the government slowly winding down the furlough scheme will concentrate minds more. Yes corona may pose some danger but being unemployed and no income will hit far far harder.
     
  9. misspentyouth62

    misspentyouth62 Member

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    I would agree and share concern however there will me many visitors to heritage railways that do not have an employed income because they are retired making their decisions based on risk to be made more readily perhaps?
     
  10. Flying Phil

    Flying Phil Well-Known Member

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    Well the GCR is planning to operate a steam service (No passengers) on Sunday according to their website. You will be able to watch from Quorn Station yard from your car or socially distanced. So that is really positive news! Let us hope it works well and that nobody is silly.
     
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  11. D1039

    D1039 Well-Known Member

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    From August heritage railways with staff on furlough will pay National Insurance (13.8% over the threshold of £169 per week) and pension contributions (minimum 3%). I make that a maximum of £424 per month per employee.

    10% of pay from September plus above contributions

    20% in October plus above contributions (maximum of £625 + £424 above = £1,049 per month per employee. These maxima will in practice be much lower for most employees, for someone on 17,000 gross it's around £420 a month).

    The scheme will closed to new entrants from 30 June with workers allowed to return to work part-time from July but with companies paying 100% of wages.

    No extensions beyond 31st October with the long off-season ahead.

    More complexities for the railways' accountants' spreadsheets. Not speculating on any particular railway I wonder if this might prompt some to consider extending the furlough to all/as many as it can at 30th June so they can be recalled part-time if needed, and to consider redundancies from August before they have to contribute. Testing times.

    Patrick
     
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  12. std tank

    std tank Member

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    Just had an email from Trans Pennine Express on the big railway. Pre-booking required and 20 people maximum per carriage.
     
  13. Romsey

    Romsey Member

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    Information from South Western Railway:

    Good afternoon

    As you will know we have been running a reduced train service since March, in line with the Government’s programme of urging all but essential travel on public transport.

    I am pleased to say that from Monday 1st June 2020, we will be re-introducing services on a number of our routes. These are:
    • An hourly service between Guildford and Farnham
    • An hourly service between Ascot and Aldershot
    • A full service on the Salisbury to Romsey via Southampton Central & Eastleigh service
    • A full service on the Island Line
    Whilst we will keep encouraging only essential travel on our train service, we hope that this increase in service will be of use to the various communities you work and live in.

    For more information about our ongoing work in dealing with the effects of coronavirus, please visit: www.southwesternrailway.com/coronavirus

    Thank you again for your support during these very difficult times.

    If you do have any questions about our timetable, please do drop me a line via stakeholders@swrailway.com and either myself or a member of my team will reply to you.

    Best wishes

    Phil Dominey

    Senior Regional Development Manager
    South Western Railway
    Address: 4th Floor, South Bank Central, 30 Stamford Street, London, SE1 9LQ
    Email: stakeholders@swrailway.com
    www.southwesternrailway.com

    It occurs to me that SWR are expecting changes in separation requirements and an increase in use in the near future. All the services listed are stopping services proving local community services for shopping, work and leisure journeys. Quite a few stations served by these services (Dunbridge, Frimley and Wanborough for example) have poor or non existent bus services to nearby larger towns/cities.

    Cheers, Neil
     
  14. 73129

    73129 Member

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    Just wondering the amount of time needed to clean and sanitise a rake of coaches before customers can re-enter a coach again. With extra time need to clean and sanitise coaches would this reduce the amount of round trips. If the amount of trips are reduced per day will this increase the ticket price and will people pay the extra cost. People on this forum may pay the extra in ticket prices but families may not.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2020
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  15. andrewtoplis

    andrewtoplis Member

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    Why does it need to be sanitised after every trip? Mainline trains are not...
     
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  16. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    I agree, much easier to encourage passengers to sanitise their own hands - I've said it before and I'll say it again, it's a two step process to catch the virus from a surface, and killing the virus on your hand sis much easier than killing it on everything else!
     
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  17. andrewtoplis

    andrewtoplis Member

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    I'm becoming a little concerned that we seem to be talking ourselves into measures substantially more difficult than the mainline railway
     
  18. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Well, yes and no. I think it is inevitable that we will have to do more for than the mainline railway, simply because the risk/benefit ratio is always slanted against us. If you're getting on a mainline train, you're going to work and being much more economically productive than sat on a train for pleasure, so you need to mitigate more for the two to be equal.
     
  19. Big Al

    Big Al Resident of Nat Pres Staff Member Moderator

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    Before we had this pandemic people generally thought very little about personal hygiene except perhaps in relation to handling food and after visiting the toilet although in the latter case for a small minority even that was an afterthought, some of the time!

    Now we are in a scenario where we might catch something, as has always been the case. The complication is that it might lay us low, as has always been a possibility, but could now be fatal but more so for those at risk.

    Surely all we can expect any heritage railway to do is take reasonable care. That doesn't include cleaning a train after every journey but it might involve thoroughly cleaning a train at the end of a day. The rest has to be down to individuals. Some will go nowhere near a heritage railway until there is a vaccine. Others will be less fussed. It's not the same as risk assessments for other railway activities but it involves the same principle. "What can we do to minimise risk, given that we cannot eliminate it?"

    I guess it's easy for me to say it as I'm not making the final decision but if heritage railways overthink whether they should return into traffic, they will never do it.
     
  20. andrewtoplis

    andrewtoplis Member

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    I think what you are trying to say @flying scotsman123 is about discretionary spending, and heritage rail needing to provide a more pleasant environment to attract visitors without the obvious 'push factor' of going to work!
     

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